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The Iglesia group addresses the design, synthesis, and structural and functional characterization of inorganic solids useful as catalysts for reactions relevant to the production, conversion and use of energy carriers, the sustainable synthesis of petrochemicals, and the minimization of environmental impacts of energy conversion and use. Current research includes designing catalysts for converting C1 and oxygenate molecules to fuels and large-volume chemicals as bridges to carbon-free energy platforms, the formation mechanism and reactivity consequences of oxygen species in oxidation and deoxygenation turnovers, the design, synthesis, and catalytic use of active sites at specific locations within confined environments to enforce molecular traffic constraints and preferential stabilization of specific transition states, and the mechanistic consequences of dense phases, whether intrapore liquids or dense surface adlayers, in solvating precursors and transition states.

This research is enabled by novel synthetic protocols to prepare active nanostructures and isolated single-site catalysts within porous solids and by techniques for assessing their location, structure, and atomic connectivity, in most instances during catalytic reactions. It also exploits steady-state and transient kinetic methods and isotopically-labeled molecules to elucidate the mechanism of reactions on surfaces, at the level of primary and secondary reaction paths, but also, and most relevantly, in terms of the elementary processes that mediate catalytic sequences. The general approach involves systematic experimental inquiries into structure and function benchmarked against rigorous analysis by density functional theory and higher-level theoretical treatments.

LSAC News

Trenton Otto Receives Heinz Heinemann Award and Chevron Research Fellowship

May 1, 2017

Congratulations to Trenton for receiving two awards! He received the Chevron Research Fellowship and the Heinz Heinemann Award in recognition of his excellence in catalysis research.

Jane Shi Receives Senior Undergraduate Research Award

April 20, 2017

Congratulations to Jane for receiving the Senior Undergraduate Research Award "in recognition of [her] impressive academic record, and sustained and outstanding research accomplishments!"

Professor Enrique Iglesia Named National Academy of Inventors Fellow

December 13, 2016

Congratulations to Professor Iglesia on being named a fellow of the National Academy of Inventors. Professor Iglesia was among 175 distinguished academic inventors announced this year. Election to the NAI is "accorded solely to academic inventors who have demonstrated a prolific spirit of innovation in creating or facilitating outstanding inventions that have made a tangible impact on quality of life, economic development, and welfare of society."

24th Solvay Conference on Chemistry:
“Catalysis in Chemistry and Biology” (Brussels)

October 19-22, 2016

LSAC Member, Trenton Otto, receives Outstanding Graduate Student Instructor Award

August 24, 2016

Congratulations to Trent on being recognized for his teaching of CBE 140: Introduction to Chemical Process Analysis this past fall!

Remarks and ICC Historical Video, 16th ICC, Beijing, China

July 5, 2016

Professor Haichao Liu (Department of Chemistry, Peking University) has been appointed as an Editor of Journal of Catalysis

April 3, 2016

Michele Sarazen's presentation named Best in Session at the 251st ACS National Meeting

March 29, 2016

Michele's paper "Probing reactivity and selectivity of surface species during alkene chain growth on solid Brønsted acids" was named the best in her session at the 251st ACS National Meeting & Exposition.

Four LSAC members awarded prestigious National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowships

March 29, 2016
Ari Fischer
Haefa Mansour
Four LSAC members were awarded NSF Graduate Research Fellowships this year!

Congratulations to Ari Fischer, Haefa Mansour, Marianne Sleiman, and Trenton Otto.



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NSF GRFP


Marianne Sleiman
Trenton Otto

LSAC Member, Gina Noh, awarded Chevron Fellowship and the ICC Young Scientist Prize

March 22, 2016

Congratulations to Gina for winning two awards this month! She received a 2016 Chevron Fellowship and the Young Scientist Prize for the 16th International Congress on Catalysis (ICC 16).


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16th International Congress on Catalysis

LSAC Member Alums in the News

February 15, 2016
Raj Gounder
Dave Flaherty
Raj Gounder (Purdue) and Dave Flaherty (Illinois) have received NSF Career Awards.



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Raj Gounder NSF Award
Dave Flaherty NSF Award




February 9, 2016

Cathy Chin (Toronto) was named to the Canada Research Chair in Advanced Catalysis.



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Canada Research Chairs







August 17, 2015

Aditya Bhan (Minnesota) received the 2016 Ipatieff Prize of the American Chemical Society.



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2016 Ipatieff Prize

LSAC Member, Michele Sarazen, awarded AIChE CRE Travel Award

November 11, 2015

Congratulations to Michele! She was recognized by the Catalysis and Reaction Engineering Division at this year's AIChE Meeting in Salt Lake City.


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AIChE 2015 CRE Award


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